A few weeks ago I started a Facebook group called Munroaming. The idea is that people who want to walk or bag Munros can get together on-line (and in real time) to swap ideas, tips and advice. Some might meet up if they fancy walking the same Munro or Munros.
Munroaming is also about matching people of similar speeds and fitness levels. You could be someone who enjoys a stroll and a natter or a bagger who prefers a full-on uphill blast. Or perhaps you are somewhere in the middle of that. Just be sure that if you plan to walk with other people that you give an indication of the type of Munro walker you are. It is frustrating to be miles ahead or miles behind… and far better to be of similar speed and aspirations.
Already there are more than 100 members and the chat and photos on Munroaming has been great. There are Munroamers who are just starting out and others who have already compleated (correct spelling for someone who has finished a Munro round) and plan to walk another round.
I have seen posts on Munroaming of people discussing plans for bagging Munros together. And this weekend, the G-Force and I met with a few of these new Munroamers.
On Saturday we said hello to a Munroaming walker, aka Fiddling The Munros, at the start of our four Munro day close to Dalwhinnie.
We were intent on the remote Munros on the high ridge running from Beinn Eibhinn over Aonach Beag to Geal Charn, and on to Carn Dearg. This involved a 10-mile mountain bike ride from Dalwhinnie to Culra bothie (now close due to asbestos concerns), walking the four Munros and a ride back out.
Many people choose to ride in, camp overnight, walk the Munros, camp again and ride out the following. We wanted to do this all in one day and so after a quick hello and chat about Munroaming with Fiddling The Munros during our campervan breakfast we sped off on our MTBs.
It is a fairly tough yet beautiful day. (Although it’s nowhere near as difficult as the Glen Etive 5). A fantastic spell of warm September weather accompanied us for much of the walk and we enjoyed the incredible atmosphere of these remote Munros.
It is also the start of Scotland’s red deer rutting season and as we returned via the glen we could hear the eerie roars of the stags as they paraded their virility to potential mates. We hoped to see a stag or two but they were scarce and only hinds could be spotted in the distance.
Both of us wished that we had chosen to bring a tent into the glen. If we had done so we would have walked the two other Munros, Ben Alder and Beinn Bheoil, the following day. However, we will leave these for another time and hope for equally good weather!
A Munroaming walk
On Sunday, we met and walked with Tansy, Graham and Daniel on the Glencoe Munro, Sgor na h-Ulaidh.
We “met” Tansy after she joined the group Munroaming. She is a mum and architect from Aberdeenshire and has ticked off all but 40 or so Munros of her first round over the past four years.
She is a member of Deeside Hillwalking Club but she is always keen to find new people to walk with. She says: “The Munros are my passion and my escape from everyday life. It’s my time for me, to do my thing. I am happy to walk solo but I really enjoy some company.
“I joined my hillwalking club to I could find people to walk with and now I can meet more people through Munroaming. I am delighted to be one of the first Munroaming walks.”
Graham is a pal of Tansy’s from Deeside Hillwalking Club. He enjoys the hills, including Corbetts and Munros, and likes getting away at weekends with his club. He admits: “I am not as fit as I’d like to be but I am determined to get out more over the next year. It’s a great challenge walking the Scottish mountains.”
I had previously met Daniel, also an architect, on a chi running weekend earlier this year, but I didn’t know he was a Munro walker until he posted in the Munroaming group.
He was free on Sunday and wanted to meet us in Glencoe to walk. So he did!
Daniel, of Glasgow, said: “Munroaming is a great idea. I am often up for a Munro walk but I can’t always find someone to walk with. I prefer to go with other people. To have a Facebook group that is dedicated to this one thing is brilliant.”
Sunshine and a Munro
The weather on Sunday was superb. The walk from the Glencoe side of Sgor na h-Ulaidh is very beautiful. After a gentle up via a stunning glen there is a steep ascent of the hilllside before another steady climb, then a short drop and then another climb to the summit.
It’s a walk that takes longer than it looks on the map, if you know what I mean, but this gave us ample time to chat and get to know our new Munroaming friends.
We all agreed that our day was made even better by the meet up and we plan to stay in touch on Munroaming so that we can get together for other Munro hikes.
If you would like to join the group please do make a request on Munroaming.
Sadly, while walking the Sunday Munro I mislaid my camera. Hmm, well, actually, it might have been the G-Force’s fault but we can’t be sure and I don’t plan to argue about it because sometimes rubbish things happen, even on a fab weekend.
Anyway, it is a bright blue Nikon compact camera and it is sitting somewhere on Sgor na h-Ulaidh. If someone finds it can they please get in touch with me.
This also means that I have had to take photos from other people so thanks to them… 🙂
Beautiful end to a weekend
An alcoholic ginger beer with the G-Force, Daniel and a small gathering of very tame deer at the Kingshouse Hotel… and this fantastic early evening view.